In line with the Governments’ recent advice on reducing social contact, the Scottish Football Museum has taken the difficult decision to close until further notice from close of business today, Tuesday 17th March. We are very sorry for any inconvenience this may cause, and further updates will be provided here as soon as they become available.
SCOTTISH FOOTBALL MUSEUM
CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR OPENING HOURS
Saturday Dec 21st The Museum will be open as normal, however the final
Stadium Tour of the day is at 11am
Sunday Dec 22nd Open as normal
Monday Dec 23rd Open as normal
Tuesday Dec 24th The final Stadium Tour is at 12.30pm. Last entry to the
Museum is at 1pm, and it will close at 2pm
Wednesday Dec 25th CLOSED
Thursday Dec 26th CLOSED
Friday Dec 27th Open as normal
Saturday Dec 28th Open as normal
Sunday Dec 29th Open as normal
Monday Dec 30th Open as normal
Tuesday Dec 31st The final Stadium Tour is at 2pm. Last entry to the
Museum is at 2pm, and it will close at 3pm
Wednesday Jan 1st CLOSED
Thursday Jan 2nd CLOSED
Friday Jan 3rd Open as normal
Saturday Jan 4th The Museum will be open as normal, however the final
Stadium Tour of the day is at 11am
Sunday Jan 5th Open as normal
Normal opening hours, subject to events:
Monday – Saturday 10am – 5pm
Sunday 11am – 5pm
Hearts legend John Robertson will be inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame at this year’s annual dinner at Scotland’s National Stadium, Hampden Park on Sunday 27 October.
A successful player and coach, John is among five inductees to be honoured at this year’s glittering awards event. Four further inductees will be announced at the dinner in October.
John is the most prolific goalscorer in the history of Heart of Midlothian FC, scoring 214 league goals including a record 27 competitive goals against city rivals Hibernian.
Apart from a brief spell with Newcastle United, the majority of John’s career was spent with the Tynecastle side where he would win the Scottish Cup in 1998 and the Scottish Premier Division top goalscorer award in the 89-90 season with 17 league goals. John was capped 16 times for Scotland, scoring three goals.
John departed Hearts in 1998 to join Livingston as a player-coach, starting a new phase of his career. His coaching career has to date taken in spells with Inverness Caledonian Thistle where he led them to the SPL for the first time in their history, Heart of Midlothian, Ross County, Livingston, Derry City, East Fife and currently, a second spell at Inverness Caledonian Thistle.
Commenting on his forthcoming induction into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame John Robertson said:
“I am so proud to hear I will be inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame. It will be an honour and very humbling to see my name alongside so many legends of Scottish football including Hearts greats Dave Mackay, Willie Bauld, Bobby Walker and McCrae’s Battalion. I’m really looking forward to being at Hampden Park in October for the dinner.”
Scottish football fans from across the world nominated the players, managers and officials whom they thought should be recognised for their contribution to Scottish football. The amassed public nominations were then considered by an expert panel from football and the media, who had the difficult task of whittling them down to just five for inclusion this year.
The inductees of the Scottish Football Hall of Fame are those truly great players, managers and officials who have reached the pinnacle of their profession and have made a significant contribution to Scottish football through their skill, spirit and determination.
The tables for this year’s annual dinner on Sunday 27th October can be secured by calling 0141 620 4040 or visiting sfmhalloffame.co.uk.
Yes, our Football Memories Project is 10 years old.
Marking 10 years of the pioneering reminiscence programme, Christina McKelvie MSP, Minister for Older People and Equalities, announced a new initiative between NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) and Football Memories Scotland.
The Minister joined Robert Craig, Chair of the Scottish Football Museum, Henry Simmons, CEO of Alzheimer Scotland, Lucy Casot, CEO of Museums Galleries Scotland and Ann-Frances Fisher, Associate Chief Nurse with NHS GGC, to mark the 10th anniversary of Football Memories Scotland and launch this new initiative.
The partnership will include a recruitment drive to attract and train new volunteers so that they can support football reminiscence activity within a number of NHS GGC hospitals. Volunteers will be trained to support patients in hospitals who have an interest in football, including people living with dementia, by talking about teams and matches from the past and using images and tangible memorabilia from a Football Memory box to stimulate memories.
Football Memory boxes contain a range of football-related items, from old footballs and shirts, to carbolic soap and liniment oil. The items are utilised as part of reminiscence work to stimulate memories using all the senses.
A generous donation from The West of Scotland Tartan Army (WESTA) has helped to create two Football Memories Boxes and these will be presented to NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde officials by representatives from WESTA.
Based at the home of Scottish football Hampden Park, the Football Memories Project is a partnership between Alzheimer Scotland and the Scottish Football Museum. The project has received significant funding from Museums Galleries Scotland and Alzheimer Scotland in recent years.
Christina McKelvie MSP, Minister for Older People and Equalities, said: “It is wonderful to be able to use the power of our national game to help people with dementia unlock memories, and bring happiness to them, their friends and their families. The initiative delivers a range of positive benefits and has now been successfully expanded to other sports.”
“I am delighted to see this new partnership support a project which is helping to improve people’s lives and strengthen communities and I applaud Robert Craig and his team, Alzheimer Scotland and, of course, the army of volunteers involved.”
Robert Craig, Chair of the Scottish Football Museum, shared: “10 years ago, the Scottish Football Museum, Falkirk FC, Aberdeen FC and the Hibernian Historical Trust started a small but pioneering reminiscence project utilising the power of football to help people living with dementia. The project has grown significantly from those early beginnings to include over 200 football memory groups across Scotland. It has been replicated in other countries including Brazil, the USA and the Netherlands, and has inspired similar work in other sports such as cricket, rugby, shinty, golf, speedway and baseball. This latest partnership with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde will further widen the scope of the project to train volunteers to support reminiscence work within hospitals across Glasgow and the West.”
Henry Simmons, Chief Executive of Alzheimer Scotland, added: “Alzheimer Scotland are extremely grateful and proud for all that has been achieved by Football Memories Scotland, to help people living with dementia. Over the past 10 years the football reminiscence group network has brought football fans and their families together across the country to enjoy reminiscing about games, players and of life memories associated with Scotland’s football clubs. The ongoing generosity of our supporters is what makes our vital work possible and has given us the opportunity to provide a funding contribution for this project.”
“This is one of the most successful strategic partnerships that we have and an exemplar of organisations and individuals across Scotland rising to the challenge of supporting people living with dementia through every means possible. Football is at the heart of so many of our communities and Football Memories Scotland has quickly become one of the most important social and therapeutic activities being offered to the people we support throughout Scotland.”
Lucy Casot, CEO of Museums Galleries Scotland, comments: “Museums Galleries Scotland is proud to have supported the Scottish Football Museum in their work with people living with dementia from the very beginning. From awarding funding towards the original one year pilot project in 2009, MGS is delighted to have seen this programme develop over the past 10 years into a national scheme. Its incredible impact on those living with dementia and social isolation shows the very real effect that reminiscence and museum objects can have on health, wellbeing and communities.”
Ann-Frances Fisher, Associate Chief Nurse with NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde, said: “Football memory cards work really well in acute hospital wards and at the Glasgow Royal infirmary Dementia café and have created a great opportunity for volunteers and staff to encourage reminiscence with patients. The football memories project also allows volunteers to generate some really interesting conversations with patients that start with football but then lead onto the many different parts of patients’ lives. They enable us to develop a more person-centred meaningful activity with the patients.”
Hearts and Scotland striker Steven Naismith today launched the search for nominees to be inducted into Scottish Football Hall of Fame at this year’s awards dinner.
Naismith was winner of two Player of the Year Awards at the Tynecastle club last season, winning both the players’ and the fans’ Player of the Year categories.
From Stewarton in Ayrshire, Naismith started his professional career at local club Kilmarnock, making over 100 appearances and scoring 29 goals. Named SPL Young Player of the Year in 2005-6 and 2006-7, his performances caught the attention of Rangers, who signed Naismith on Deadline Day in summer 2007. After five seasons at the Ibrox club (winning three Scottish Premier League titles, a Scottish Cup and two Scottish League Cups), he landed a dream move to English Premier League side Everton.
Naismith played for four seasons in Merseyside, recording more than 100 league appearances and became a favourite with Everton fans after scoring against Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal. A career highlight included a ‘perfect’ hat-trick against Chelsea becoming the only player in EPL history to score a hat-trick against Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea. Naismith’s next move was to Norwich City in January 2016.
Naismith returned to Scotland on loan from Norwich City to Hearts under the stewardship of his former Scotland manager Craig Levein. In the season past, Naismith scored 14 goals in 19 appearances. Hearts had a win rate of 63% with Naismith in the team and 15% without him.
Naismith currently has 49 senior caps for Scotland, just one away from being recognised in the Scottish FA Roll of Honour (for those with 50 caps or more).
Off the pitch, Naismith is a strong supporter of many charitable causes. He is an ambassador for Dyslexia Scotland and works with homelessness charities in Glasgow and Liverpool.
This year’s Hall of Fame inductees will be announced at a star-studded dinner at Hampden Park on Sunday 27th October in association with Hampden Conference & Events and Prestige Sodexo.
Football fans can participate by clicking here and nominate the personality of their choice. You can also post your nomination to: Scottish Football Hall of Fame, Hampden Park, Glasgow, G42 9BA. Closing date for nominations is midnight on Sunday 25th August.
The inductees are those truly great players, managers and officials who have reached the pinnacle of their profession and have made a significant contribution to Scottish football’s reputation through their skill, spirit and determination.
Tables can be secured by calling 0141 620 4040.
The Hall of Fame is a permanent feature in the Scottish Football Museum at Hampden Park.
A panel of experts from the world of football and the media will consider nominees and elect successful candidates.
The Scots created curling. They wrote the first rules and standardised the stones and the size of the rink. They made its language, from the hog to the house, and they gave it to the world.
This exhibition is based on the collection of the late Sheriff David B. Smith which he left to the Scottish Curling Trust in 2015.
The earliest certain reference to curling dates from 1620, though there is evidence from Paisley, that it had been played in the previous century.
This old game was played outdoors, often on rough ice on which the house and the hogs were scratched.
The first indoor rink was at Southport in Lancashire, opened in 1879, it was a commercial failure, but it was followed by rinks in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Curlers travelled long distances, typically by train, to play at the city venues.
The popularity of Ice Hockey in the late 1930’s made possible the building of many more indoor rinks, and new ones were opened in the 1960’s and 1970’s, encouraging women to take up the game.
From 1959 onwards international competition expanded, so that it is now the public face of the game.
The last of the outdoor Grand Matches was held in 1979. Since 200 they have been played indoors every five years.
Football Memories Scotland, the project of the Scottish Football Museum, are delighted to announce that the Co-op has commissioned Football Memories Scotland to create 200 packs of ‘Sporting Heroes’ cards. The cards will be used by Co-op colleagues who have been trained by Football Memories Scotland to deliver sport reminiscence sessions across the UK, in care homes and other locations.
Football Memories Scotland was the first national sports reminiscence project launched in the world.
The project, celebrating its tenth year in 2019, started with a focus on football but has since developed into a multi-sport collaboration through Sports Heritage Scotland which has seen groups launched covering rugby, cricket, golf, shinty & speedway.
The packs will be used in reminiscence groups who aim to use memories of sport to help those living with Dementia or experiencing social isolation.
Above: The new pack which will be used in reminiscence groups.
Each card in a pack includes a profile of a sporting legend including Denis Law, Kenny Dalglish, Joe Jordan and Gordon Banks from the world of football, ex Rugby heroes Sandy Carmichael and Gavin Hastings and many more from across football, rugby, cricket, golf and speedway.
The Co-op have a long history of supporting social and community initiatives. In 2017 the Co-op funeral home in Dunfermline launched a range of ‘memory boxes’ to be used in care homes and day centres to help those living with dementia re-connect with distant memories. This how now been rolled out across the UK.
Joe Jordan is a legend of British and world football. At club level he is renowned for his time playing for Leeds United and Manchester United in England and AC Milan in Italy. At international level he was capped 52 times by Scotland and has the unique distinction of scoring in three consecutive World Cups (1974, 1978 & 1982).
Robert Craig, Chair of the Scottish Football Museum and Sports Heritage Scotand commented: “We are delighted to receive this commission from the Co-op to create 200 packs of ‘Sporting Heroes’ cards. These cards will be used across the UK by Co-op staff trained by Football Memories in how to deliver reminiscence sessions, in care homes and elsewhere.”
Paul Denton, Managing Director of Co-op Funeralcare commented: “We’re so pleased to be working with Football Memories Scotland on this extremely worthwhile initiative. Across the UK, we’re involved in thousands of community activities. From bereavement groups to coffee mornings, we’re continuously looking for new ways to support the communities we serve. These Sporting Heroes cards will be a great addition to our memory boxes and the work that we already do to support those living with dementia.’’
The 7th January is home to a unique record registered in the Scottish football history books.
120 years past, Rangers embarked on one of their most successful seasons in their history, for in the 1898-99 season, the club’s 26th season in football and the ninth season of the Scottish Football League, Rangers went on to achieve a one hundred percent record of 18 wins from 18 matches.
It is a record which, in the matter of hard, actual results, has never, or may possibly ever be equalled. On the question of intrinsic value, there is no immediate necessity to dilate or discuss. For this title remains unique in the annuals of British football.
Governed by match secretary, William Wilton, the quest for the league title would commence at home to Partick Thistle – winning 6-2 at Ibrox – on 20th August 1898 and finally achieved on 7th January 1899. Commanding victories, such as 10-0 over Hibernian, an 8-0 win against Clyde and 4-0 performance away to Celtic Park, ensured confidence amongst the Ibrox faithful that a special season was in their grasp. The Championship was eventually decided by a 7-0 win over Dundee at Ibrox but the players continued their glittering league form and finished the season to claim the 100% winning record. The team averaged more than four goals per match, 79 goals were scored by Rangers in the league with only 18 conceded. Club captain, Robert Cumming Hamilton, would finish as Scotland’s top goalscorer – finding the net 21 times during the league campaign.
Above: William Wilton
An instructive discussion could be carried on for a long time regarding the comparative merits of the achievements of teams which may have represented the club, and there would be found many ready to motion certain other achievements of Rangers’ more modern history as second to none. However, whatever may be the opinions or prejudices of individuals, nothing can deprive the 1898-99 team of the unique distinction of having gone through an entire League competition without losing a single point. Looked at from any angle, it is one a performance great in the extreme, testimony at once to the endurance, the enthusiasm, and the skill of the players who accomplished it.
On the day when Rangers completed the record by defeating Clyde, at Shawfield Park, R.C. Hamilton, the captain, speaking at the tea party which always followed the matches played in Glasgow, said their success was due:
“Largely to the splendid esprit de corps that had animated the team. They were heart and soul for the club, prepared to fight out every match to the last second; and, indeed, the story of their victories shows that without indomitable courage this unmatched record could never have been created.”
Outwith the Scottish league, the men in Royal Blue seen off Hearts, Ayr Parkhouse, Clyde and St Mirren to reach the Scottish Cup Final. Though they would narrowly miss out on a domestic double losing 2-0 to Celtic at Hampden. As well as this disappointment, Rangers would crash out of the Glasgow and Charity Cups, a feat in itself as some merit, but were unable to success on all fronts. Though the lack of an additional trophy does not take away the gloss of a monumental season for the Glasgow club.
Above: Rangers 1899 star John McPherson’s Glasgow cap in our museum.
In the same year, after achieving the record, Rangers would move to their current location of Ibrox Stadium and appoint their first ever manager in match secretary, William Wilton. The rest, as they say, is history.
Above: Wilton’s signature, on Rangers documentation dated from 1899, in our museum store.
Rangers team of 1898/99.
The beginning of one of Scotland’s famous amateur football teams starts with a Cambridge graduate and high-powered businessman whose family owned one of Clydeside’s most beautiful estates on Ardmore peninsula, near Cardross.
The man with the vision to construct one of the best amateur teams in the country was a Mr Douglas Smith, an inspirational pioneer in boys’ club football, introducing to the youth grade a level of organization, vision and dedication more than many associated with the professional game. As a hobby, he founded the club as a Boys’ Brigade team, and their original strips, donated by the Clydebank Singer factory, were the Celtic colours of green and white hoops. Smith reasoned it was unlikely there would be a colour clash with other west of Scotland Boys’ Brigade sides. Eventually settling at Duntocher, they changed to become Drumchapel Amateurs.
He officially established Drumchapel Amateurs in 1950 – having transformed a Boys’ Brigade team that had never won a match – and steered the club unerringly towards excellence in every aspect of the sport. Ultimately the club emerged as the best known Scottish amateur side other than Queen’s Park, and earned an international reputation, regularly representing Scotland in tournaments throughout Europe – setting up matches against the youths of AC Milan and Barcelona – picking up the odd win or two.
But Smith’s legacy and belief in football ran deeper than caps, titles and medals. Under his tutelage, Drumchapel players were no ordinary footballers; they were always instilled with universal qualities such as self-discipline, self-belief and respect for others, which prepared them as much for life outside the game as it did on the football pitch. Hundreds of boys were transformed into respectable young men with values thanks to Mr Smith’s strong beliefs of manners and sportsmanship.
Everything was done in a professional manner. Itineraries were sent to each player, receiving a time-table for the following Saturday informing them who they were playing, where they were to meet and who would collect them if they needed a lift after playing for their schools in the morning. If you represented ‘The Drum’, you wouldn’t dare let the club or Douglas Smith down.
Under Smith’s guidance, many young players progressed to become professional footballers, and some even achieved international status, including Sir Alex Ferguson as Aberdeen, Scotland and Manchester United manager, and players such as Archie Gemmill, Asa Hartford, David Moyes, John Wark, Andy Gray, Alex Willoughby and Mo Johnston to name a few. In Fact, more than 300 players came through the ranks of this unique amateur team. At least 4-5 professional club scouts would observe Drumchapel’s matches.
The most famous ex-Drummie is indeed the former manager of Manchester United, who is always happy to acknowledge the grounding given to him by the club and, above all, Mr Smith. As Sir Alex would testify, Douglas Smith’s benign influence continued on at Old Trafford, Goodison Park and many other football places.
In January 2003 Smith finally handed over the reins of the club he had run for more than half a century. Shortly after, Smith stated: “I only feel two or three years older than the boys I work with. That’s what working with youngsters does for you. They’re my life and I’ve been a very fortunate man.”
Douglas Smith sadly passed away in February 2004. A portrait of Mr Smith hangs in our museum in recognition of his contribution to the club and the development of young footballers. It was unveiled in 2014 by former Drumchapel player, Sir Alex Ferguson.
‘The Drum’ Roll of Honour
Asa Hartford (West Brom, Everton & Man City)
Archie Gemmill (Derby & Nottingham Forest)
John Wark (Ipswich & Liverpool)
John Robertson (Nottingham Forest)
Eddie McCreadie (Chelsea)
Pat Crerand (Celtic & Man Utd)
Mo Johnston (Watford, Nantes, Celtic & Rangers)
John O’Hare (Derby)
Alan Brazil (Ipswich, Tottenham, Man Utd)
Bobby Hope (West Brom)
Jim Forrest (Rangers)
Jim Cruikshank (Hearts)
George McLean (Dundee)
Ally Hunter (Celtic)
Iain Munro (St Mirren)
Tony Green (Blackpool & Newcastle)
Tommy Craig (Sheffield Wed & Newcastle)
Andy Gray (Aston Villa, Wolves, Everton)
Jim Kennedy (Celtic)
Paul Wilson (Celtic)
Francis Munro (Wolves)
Frank McAvennie (West Ham & Celtic)
Ally Dawson (Rangers)
One of the most important, and stressful, jobs in the game of football is the position of club manager. Now, more than ever due to intense pressure, ‘the gaffer’ can be removed from their position in just a matter of weeks from monumental success.
The job role has modernised and redeveloped through time, though where did the role of a manager come into place? Which point in the national sport timeline did a manager have responsibility in overlooking football players? And who even was the first ever football manager?
The world’s first ever appointed, paid football manager, in 1886, was a Scot called George Ramsay; who would become a formidable force in English football.
George Ramsay was born in Glasgow on 3rd March 1855. It was at the age of 21 years old when he made the trip south, arriving in Birmingham to work as a clerk in a brass foundry. His first interaction with Aston Villa was completely accidental. Had the rough Scotsman not come across a practice football match – in 1876 – between a bunch of ill-organised, inexperienced cricketers, it is unlikely that the name Aston Villa would be a household name today.
Walking past a Villa players’ practice match in Aston Park, he was asked to make up the numbers, taking them up on the invitation. Impressed by his incredible skills, the Villa players invited him to join the club; to which he agreed to sign. Shortly after signing for Villa he was appointed captain of the club.
A number of prominent Scots were associated with Villa at the time, including star player Archie Hunter,and, of course, William McGregor: the club president. In addition, the committee had also decided to adopt the Scottish Lion Rampant for the club crest.
Word spread about how fine a player George was, spectators began turning up to watch the little man nicknamed ‘Scotty’. In 1880, Ramsay led Villa to their first trophy – the Birmingham Senior Cup. The following season Aston Villa won 21 of their 25 games also winning the Staffordshire Cup in the same year. George Ramsay was in outstanding form. Unfortunately, a serious injury forced Ramsay to retire from first-class football in June 1882. Two years later, he was appointed as club secretary.
His influence wasn’t restricted to the pitch. He also negotiated the purchase of Villa’s new ground at Wellington Road, Perry Barr. Villa played at Perry Barr until 1897 when the club moved to the Aston Lower Grounds, next to Aston Hall, which later became known as Villa Park. According to club folklore, it has been stated that Ramsay was the first man to kick a ball at Villa Park.
The club decided to convert from amateurism to professionalism in 1885. The committee decided that, in order to maintain their recent risen status, developments and procedures must be changed.
What seemed such a small, unremarkable advertisement appeared in the pages of a local newspaper in the English midlands days later…
‘Wanted: manager for Aston Villa Football Club, who will be required to devote his whole time under direction of the committee. Salary £100 per annum. Applications with reference must be made not later than June 23rd to Chairman of the Committee, Aston Villa Club House, 6 Witton Road, Aston’
Villa would then make a landmark appointment, in 1886, creating a position which would become the very norm to every club in the world for the foreseeable. They would appoint a ‘manager’ of the football team. In the end, the outcome was that the role was to be handed to their club secretary, George Ramsay. This decision meant that technically Ramsay, a Scot, was the first paid manager anywhere in world football.
Although the wording of the advertisement described the position as ‘manager’ the convention of the time was followed and Ramsay was generally referred to as the club’s secretary. The committee would pick the team but it was Ramsay who taught them how to play beautiful football.
In all Ramsay’s association with the football club lasted 59 years, there is a time, particularly at the start of his tenure, which will always be known as Aston Villa’s ‘Golden Age’. The great Scot led his teams to an astonishing six league titles and six FA Cups between 1893 and 1920, a managerial record that stands today.
In terms of winning titles, he is ranked 3rd behind Sir Alex Ferguson and Bob Paisley. Break those titles down and it shows his record of six League Championships and six FA Cups is second only to Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger respectively.
What is more impressive is the 49.59 per cent win ratio he achieved during his remarkable tenure at Villa Park that has Ramsay ranked above some of the football’s biggest names. In 2014, it emerged his relentless success leaves him ninth in a table ranking Premier League/First Division managers through history on their overall win percentage records. This puts him ahead of Liverpool legend Bill Shankly on 49.31 per cent, double winning Spurs coach Bill Nicholson on 48.72, and Nottingham Forest’s Brian Clough, who had a 45.03 win rate during a trophy-laden career, including two European Cups.
Ramsay held his position as secretary of Villa until 1926, when he was 71, then becoming an advisor and vice-president. He died in October 1935 and was laid to rest in St Mary’s churchyard, Handsworth Wood. His gravestone reads “Founder of Aston Villa”.